Indonesia will bid to host the 2032 Olympics following the success of the Asian Games held in Jakarta and Palembang over the past two weeks, President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo said Saturday.
Jokowi made the announcement at a meeting in Bogor with the presidents of the International Olympic Committee and the Asian Olympic Committee.
“With the experience we have in organizing the 18th Asian Games, we are sure Indonesia can also host a bigger event,” Jokowi said in a statement after the meeting.
IOC President Thomas Bach welcomed the candidacy of Indonesia, the world’s fourth most populous nation, saying that the Asian Games provided a “strong foundation” for the country’s 2032 bid.
“Because with this Asian Games, with this great success, Indonesia has shown that they have all the ingredients to hold the Olympics successfully,” said Bach.
About 12,000 athletes from 45 nations and territories as well as several thousand officials and journalists took part in the games that end Saturday. As host, Indonesia provided a spectacular opening ceremony and also exceeded its own expectations in winning 30 golds, placing fourth on the medal table.
Indonesia, projected to be among the world’s 10 biggest economies by 2030, used the games to shift perceptions that it’s in the “too hard” basket, paving the way for a tilt at even bigger sports hosting baubles.
Tokyo is hosting the 2020 Olympics with Paris and Los Angeles already selected to host the following two Games in 2024 and 2028, respectively.
Massive problems with 2016 Olympics in Brazil, a developing country with endemic corruption, may count against Indonesia’s chances. It cost Brazil about $20 billion to host the Olympics, a bill that is likely to raise objections in Indonesia, where poverty remains widespread.